A computer program processes the digitized outputs of a set of downward-looking video cameras aboard an aircraft flying over the ocean. The purpose served by this software is to facilitate the detection of large drift nets that have been lost, abandoned, or jettisoned. The development of this software and of the associated imaging hardware is part of a larger effort to develop means of detecting and removing large drift nets before they cause further environmental damage to the ocean and to shores on which they sometimes impinge. The software is capable of near-realtime processing of as many as three video feeds at a rate of 30 frames per second. After a user sets the parameters of an adjustable algorithm, the software analyzes each video stream, detects any anomaly, issues a command to point a high-resolution camera toward the location of the anomaly, and, once the camera has been so aimed, issues a command to trigger the camera shutter. The resulting high-resolution image is digitized, and the resulting data are automatically uploaded to the operator’s computer for analysis.

This program was written by Tim Veenstra of Airborne Technologies Inc. for Stennis Space Center.

Inquiries concerning rights for its commercial use should be addressed to:

Tim Veenstra Airborne Technologies Inc. 4338 N. Gunflint Trail Wasilla, AK 99656 Phone: (907) 357-1500 Fax: (361) 825-5848 Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Refer to SSC-00300-1, volume and number of this NASA Tech Briefs issue, and the page number.

NASA Tech Briefs Magazine

This article first appeared in the March, 2009 issue of NASA Tech Briefs Magazine.

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